Tina Sloan McPherson '65
What being an alumna means to me...
Now that I am "grown up" and can look back with some equanimity, my thoughts for "growing up" are fondly remembered. Since I was boy crazy as could be, many of my college memories are of whipping off to Yale to visit my boyfriend every weekend, but my career as an actress and as a writer and some of my closest friends evolved from my Manhattanville days.
My senior year some friends/classmates decided to write a play they titled THE FINE ART OF FALLING. Susan E. Kennedy and Kathy Macdonald were the amazing playwrights and songwriters as this was a musical. I remember trembling as I went over to the Kennedy building to tryout since I couldn't carry a note. I sat outside and listened as people went in and read and sang and came back out. Then in I went and read and was silent. They looked at me and urged me to sing as they "loved" how I had read. I was silent again and finally mumbled something about how I couldn't carry a tune. They laughed and said, "Oh, come on! Sing Silent Night" - I started and they grimaced and believed me in no uncertain terms. But I got the part of the lead in this wonderful play about falling in love and falling on the ski slopes. And I LOVED it and it started me out as an actress.
I also loved doing my senior thesis, THE HINDU UPANISHADS INFLUENCE ON T.S. ELIOTS FOUR QUARTETS. I mean really- only in college could one come up with that title. Makes me laugh now but at the time, I was so into it. My thesis advisor was brilliant and led me to make the first conclusions that were original in my life. Some of my professors also encouraged this sort of thinking that in "my day" was not as abundant as thinking for oneself is today.
The great friendships were the other part of school that has so influenced my life. Jeanne Taylor, Kathy Cramer, Kathi Isom, Pamela Grace, Sheila Dorsey, Jane Correa, Linda Hogan. Jane has left us forever but some of the others are still my closest friends and for that I am so grateful to Manhattanville. I can talk to Linda or Kathy or Jeanne and we pick up right away. I am so happy when their children or grandchildren do something special (like being born) and they were there for me when my son was in Iraq in the Marines. The friendships born in college are to be treasured and I could pick from so many wonderful people. Even now, I am finding other friends who were in my class that I didn't know as well when I was in college but now see. The bond of those 4 years is huge.
So in summary, my work and my friendships came from school (the boyfriend didn't become a husband so that didn't happen) and I remember those 4 years so fondly - I just smile.
Tina Sloan has appeared in the Woody Allen films Celebrity and The Curse of the Jade Scorpion. She can also been seen in The Brave One with Jodi Foster, Changing Lanes with Ben Affleck, The Guru with Marisa Tomei, and People I Know with Al Pacino. On television she played Lillian Raines on Guiding Light for 26 years, and for 10 years prior Tina was on the soaps Somerset, Search For Tomorrow, and Another World. She has also been seen on Law & Order, SVU and Third Watch.
The release of her book, Changing Shoes, published by Penguin, was on September 16, 2010 -the one year anniversary of when Guiding Light went off the air.
Tina is currently doing several webseries -VENICETHESERIES and GOTHAMTHESERIES and has recently completed several films. The films are HAPPY NEW YEAR, BLACK SWAN, OH, MY LOVE, and EVIL EYES.
Tina also toured the country in the one woman play she co-wrote which is also called CHANGING SHOES. It was in New York City on Sept 20 and then goes to Pittsburgh Oct 11, Cincinatti Oct 18 and Houston Oct 25.
She is feeling VERY busy.